Transport for the North has appointed interim Northern Powerhouse Rail director Tim Wood on a permanent basis to help deliver its 30-year rail investment programme.
Wood has been in his role on an interim basis since October last year, and has now taken up the role permanently. He has more than 30 years’ experience in the industry, having worked for both Amey and Balfour Beatty.
The organisation launched its draft Strategic Transport Plan this year, with consultations currently under way. The plan proposes a £69bn investment programme, which equates to £150 per person in the North per year.
TfN’s Northern Powerhouse Rail proposals will link new and the existing rail network to HS2, and will connect Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield, and Hull via improved railway links.
It will also include more rail connections between London and the North of England, and the organisation has called on HS2 to add more junctions in Cheshire to ensure the high-speed rail link can serve Liverpool via a new line.
TfN’s plan aims to bring 1.3m people within a 60-minute commute of four or more Northern cities.
Barry White, chief executive of TfN, said: “Over the last few months Tim has proven his capability and suitability to lead the Northern Powerhouse Rail team.
“He has demonstrated his passion for the role and for our wider vision of a thriving North of England where modern transport connections drive economic growth and support an excellent quality of life.”
Wood added: “The last few months have been extremely busy for the organisation with the launch of our draft Strategic Transport Plan and consultation events taking place across the North.
“Northern Powerhouse Rail is at the heart of Transport for the North’s plans and is critical to rebalancing the UK economy. I look forward to leading the team as we embrace the challenge of progressing the programme in the year ahead.”